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The Source: The Story of the Beats and the Beat Generation (1999)

88 min | Documentary, Biography, History

Traces the Beats from Allen Ginsberg and Jack Kerouac's meeting in 1944 at Columbia University to the deaths of Ginsberg and William S. Burroughs in 1997. Three actors provide dramatic interpretations of the work of these three writers, ...See moreTraces the Beats from Allen Ginsberg and Jack Kerouac's meeting in 1944 at Columbia University to the deaths of Ginsberg and William S. Burroughs in 1997. Three actors provide dramatic interpretations of the work of these three writers, and the film chronicles their friendships, their arrival into American consciousness, their travels, frequent parodies, Kerouac's death, and Ginsberg's politicization. Their movement connects with bebop, John Cage's music, abstract expressionism, and living theater. In recent interviews, Ginsberg, Burroughs, Kesey, Ferlinghetti, Mailer, Jerry Garcia, Tom Hayden, Gary Snyder, Ed Sanders, and others measure the Beats' meaning and impact. Written by See less
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Release date
Jan 23, 1999 (United States)

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Cast

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63 cast members
Name STARmeter Known for
Johnny Depp
Jack Kerouac Jack Kerouac   See fewer
51
Dennis Hopper
William S. Burroughs William S. Burroughs   See fewer
Top 5000
John Turturro
Allen Ginsberg Allen Ginsberg   See fewer
Top 5000
Members only
Members only
Members only
Members only
Members only
Members only
Members only
Members only
Members only
Kyle Roderick
Self - Corso biographer Self - Corso biographer   See fewer
Members only
Members only
Ken Kesey
Self (archive footage) Self (archive footage)   See fewer
Members only
Members only
Members only
Members only
Members only
Stephen Ronan
Self - Beat historian (as Stephen Ronin) Self - Beat historian (as Stephen Ronin)   See fewer
Members only
Members only
Members only
Members only
Members only
Members only
Members only
Members only
Members only
Steve Allen
Self (archive footage) Self (archive footage)   See fewer
Members only
Members only
Paul Bowles
Self (archive footage) Self (archive footage)   See fewer
Members only
Lenny Bruce
Self (archive footage) Self (archive footage)   See fewer
Members only
William F. Buckley
Self (archive footage) Self (archive footage)   See fewer
Members only
Mortimer Burroughs
Self (archive footage) Self (archive footage)   See fewer
Members only
John Cage
Self (archive footage) Self (archive footage)   See fewer
Members only
Neal Cassady
Self (archive footage) Self (archive footage)   See fewer
Members only
Shirley Clarke
Self (archive footage) Self (archive footage)   See fewer
Members only
Walter Cronkite
Self (archive footage) Self (archive footage)   See fewer
Members only
Richard J. Daley
Self (archive footage) Self (archive footage)   See fewer
Members only
Bob Dylan
Self (archive footage) Self (archive footage)   See fewer
Members only
Dizzy Gillespie
Self (archive footage) Self (archive footage)   See fewer
Members only
Brion Gysin
Self (archive footage) Self (archive footage)   See fewer
Members only
Abbie Hoffman
Self (archive footage) Self (archive footage)   See fewer
Members only
Billie Holiday
Self (archive footage) Self (archive footage)   See fewer
Members only
J. Edgar Hoover
Self (archive footage) Self (archive footage)   See fewer
Members only
Bob Hope
Self (archive footage) Self (archive footage)   See fewer
Members only
Lyndon B. Johnson
Self (archive footage) (as Lyndon Johnson) Self (archive footage) (as Lyndon Johnson)   See fewer
Members only
Robert F. Kennedy
Self (archive footage) Self (archive footage)   See fewer
Members only
Jack Kerouac
Self (archive footage) Self (archive footage)   See fewer
Members only
Jan Kerouac
Self (archive footage) Self (archive footage)   See fewer
Members only
Martin Luther King
Self (archive footage) Self (archive footage)   See fewer
Members only
John Leguizamo
Self (archive footage) Self (archive footage)   See fewer
Top 5000
Norman Mailer
Self (archive footage) Self (archive footage)   See fewer
Members only
Steve Martin
Self (archive footage) Self (archive footage)   See fewer
Top 5000
Groucho Marx
Self (archive footage) Self (archive footage)   See fewer
Members only
Members only
Robert Motherwell
Self (archive footage) Self (archive footage)   See fewer
Members only
Deborah Norville
Self (archive footage) Self (archive footage)   See fewer
Members only
Peter Orlovsky
Self (archive footage) Self (archive footage)   See fewer
Members only
Stuart Perkoff
Self (archive footage) Self (archive footage)   See fewer
Members only
Members only
Marlon Riggs
Self (archive footage) Self (archive footage)   See fewer
Members only
Henry Rollins
Self (archive footage) Self (archive footage)   See fewer
Top 5000
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Ratings Breakdown

7.4 / 10 | 734 votes